How to get rid of possum in car engines?

This blog post will answer the question,’ How to get rid of possum in car engine’ and cover topics like, what attracts possums to cars, signs of a possum invasion, places to look for in case of a possum invasion, and how to tackle a possum invasion.

How to get rid of possum in car engine

The following methods can be followed to get rid of possum in car engines:

  • Keeping vehicles clean and devoid of waste like paper, food, waste that is based on plastic, etc.
  • Keeping the vehicle free from moisture as possum thrive in areas with water in it so it is advisable not to allow condensation to build up.
  • Any kind of foliage like leaves, twigs, and strands of grass should not be allowed to accumulate inside the vehicle as it creates a direct entry for possum into the vehicle.
  • There should not be any kind of openings like doors or sunroofs not closing properly.
  • Mice thrive in dark areas and build nests in the same, so it is advisable to keep the vehicle illuminated as much as possible.

The above tips are easy and simple to follow however, for a stricter approach it is advisable to use strong possum repellants unlike homemade formulas as they reek and need to be applied frequently.

Mice can do considerable damage to the vehicle as they might find it a safe place to rest and store food. Therefore, it is essential to spot potential possum invasions and take steps to curb an invasion if it has already happened.

What attracts possums to cars?

The following factors need to be kept in mind as they contribute to most of the possum invasions in a car engine

  • Low illumination attracts possums as they look for dark and shady areas in the vehicle to nest and store food.
  • Electrolysis in the car alerts possum as they sense the usage of water, something that they thrive in.
  • If the vehicle has been turned into a dumpster, containing waste like leftover food and plastic-based waste, it can attract not only possum but larger rodents as well.
  • The warmth of the batteries and other heating components.
  • Since possums are habitants of more bushy and forestry areas, the presence of foliage in and around the vehicle attracts them a lot.

Signs of a possum invasion 

The following are the signs that a possum has invaded the vehicle’s engine:

Bad odor

There will always be an unpleasant odor coming out of the vehicle which is unrecognizable initially.


There is an ever-present chewing and scratching noise which can either be on a wire or an electrical component.

Malfunctioning display systems

The display systems might start acting up due to some wire or any electrical component that might have been chewed upon.


Bite or chew marks are visible in older vehicle models and can be very prominent if the vehicle is too old.

Damaged wires and cables 

The wires and cables are easy to be damaged and one can find gnawing on such parts in and around the engine.

Droppings and chew holes

One can identify a possum invasion by looking for droppings in the engine bay and chewing holes in engine components.

Places to look for in case of a possum invasion

The following are the areas to be inspected in case of a suspected possum invasion:


The glove box is a very good place for a possum to thrive and nest if it is not used for a long time.


Batteries are usually warm and possums are attracted to any kind of warm component.


Car trunks offer possums a vast area to expand their nesting ideas, especially trunks having smaller side compartments that give possums all the more security and privacy for nesting or storing food.


Vents are a very suitable place for possums to thrive as they are dark and warm and help possums to stick inside and chew on wires and cables.

How to tackle a possum invasion?

The following steps need to be kept in mind in case a possum invasion has already taken place.

  • Firstly the droppings and nests including any extra debris need to be eliminated using a vacuum.
  • Engine rinsing is advisable either with a garden hose or by adding a few drops of peppermint oil in a spray bottle that can help clear out extra nesting materials and also the unpleasant odor.
  • The engine compartment should be inspected for any sign of damage and must be taken for immediate repairs by a professional mechanic.
  • Usage of possum repellants not involving cheap homemade formulas can go a long way especially involving some peppermint oil as possums are disgusted by it.

An important point to be noted is that after the entire cleaning drive has been carried out, we must not vacuum immediately as the droppings and other possum waste can be infected by Hantavirus which is dangerous for humans if inhaled.

The vehicle must be moved outside in the open air and blow-dried.

Following this, we must mix bleach or peppermint oil with water and spray it on the affected areas while wearing rubber gloves. 

After allowing this to sit for about five minutes we need to wipe them dry with a towel and sponge the areas with the solution. This must be followed by throwing materials in a bag and washing hands with soap and water.

Research has shown different types of rodents that can invade a vehicle and wreak havoc inside.


This blog post addressed the question, ‘ How to get rid of possum in car engines?’

We understood the various factors that invite a possum invasion and also noted the signs indicating a possum invasion. Furthermore, we came across the different places to check for a possum invasion and steps that need to be followed to tackle a possum invasion. Please feel free to comment on the content or ask any questions in the comments section below.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs): How to get rid of possum in car engine?

How do I keep possum from under the hood of my car?

To deter rodents especially possum, peppermint oil or cayenne pepper can be used as a spraying solution, although these need to be applied on a particular routine as they can wear off quickly.

What is the best way to get possum out of your car?

Cleaning up waste and setting mouse traps inside the vehicle helps. Taking the car to a car wash to scare them away is a good idea.

Do dryer sheets keep possum out of cars?

They unfortunately do not help in deterring possums. The same goes for baited traps as they do not work wonders either.